Obama Backs Off Plan to Demilitarize Police After Meeting With Lobbyists

ixquick-proxy.com_2016-03-01_12-05-24Obama Backs Off Plan to Demilitarize Police After Meeting With Lobbyists – [theantimedia.org] – During a meeting with “law enforcement leaders,” whom Tech Dirt calls “law enforcement lobbyists,” Jim Pasco, the executive director of the Fraternal Order of Police, and Bill Johnson, the executive director of the National Association of Police Organizations, urged Obama and Vice President Joe Biden “to reinstate military equipment such as helmets, grenade launchers and tracked armored vehicles to enhance officers’ safety and their ability to respond to violent riots.” After the meeting, Pasco said the White House was under the impression that military gear “was intimidating to people, but they didn’t know the purpose it serves.” To the Fraternal Order of Police leader, a grenade launcher can be used to launch tear gas “for crowd control,” for instance. According to Reuters, Obama urged White House chief legal counsel Neil Eggleston to review the 2015 ban shortly after the meeting. But despite all the buzz the recent Dallas shooting has caused, Tech Dirt adds, “the recent clustering of officer deaths doesn’t put the nation on track for anything more than an average year of on-duty deaths,” making it hard for law enforcement lobbyists to maintain the position that “police need greater protections now.” [emphasis added] Unfortunately, Tech Dirt concludes, Obama and Biden seem to have wasted no time “discussing the underlying causes of the protests officers are now facing” while meeting with law enforcement lobbyists. As Tech Dirt noted, none of those causes “will be resolved with increased police militarization.” Instead of standing by his own previous commitment to scale back militarization, Obama was quick to give into police pressure — proving once more that this administration’s seeming willingness to address the root causes behind the issues the United States now faces is nothing more than a slogan.

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